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BellaOnline's Floral Design Editor

Decorating with Holiday Plants

Christmas accounts for 30% of all floral and potted plant purchases. That may sound like a lot, but realize that 85% of those are for poinsettias, which are used for cut flowers.

Though we normally think of azaleas as outdoor plants, they also have their place indoors. For the holidays, theyíre available as potted plants in many different colors, and can also be used as cut flowers. The pastels are especially festive.

Cyclamens are gaining much-deserved popularity as a holiday plant. Even when they arenít in bloom, the beautiful foliage adds a touch of color. Cyclamen are sold in a wide range of colors, including white, pink, and many shades of red. These are an excellent cut flower.

Red-flowering bromeliads are an ideal plant for the holiday period. As a cut flower, they usually last for weeks and weeks, and require very little attention.

Amaryllis are commonly seen during the holidays. But donít neglect the other fine bulbs that are available. Usually I see various kinds of forced bulbs for Christmas, such as tulips, hyacinths, narcissus, and squill. In addition to being sold as potted bulbs, some varieties are also available as cut flowers.

The ones most commonly used are cut hyacinths and cut paperwhites. These make superb centerpieces and bouquets for the holiday season. Even cut red anthurium flowers would be a wonderful addition to a seasonal flower arrangement.

Along with all these flowers itís good to have some greenery as well. Evergreen branches are typically used for garlands and wreaths. As garlands, they're used on mantles, staircases, and around mirrors and windows.

In addition to wreaths, swags made of evergreen boughs have their place, especially on doors. If you don't have evergreens in your yard that can provide the floral materials you need, just buy a ready-made wreath, garland, or swag. Then, add your personal touches to fit your color scheme.

All sorts of floral materials have a place during the holidays, and these are only a few.

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